Entertainer in Infamous the Show.
Entertainer in Infamous the Show.
If you haven’t yet had the pleasure of experiencing Infamous, the circus cabaret show currently taking the Gold Coast by storm, we suggest you get on that quick smart. In large part due to this guy.
Jessie Grant is one of Infamous’ lead performers, a self proclaimed clown, trapeze artist and general good time guy who pulls the show together with his hilarious antics and partial nudity.
We sat down for a chat with Jessie about being a seventh generation circus performer and double somersaults on the (way too high in our opinion) trapeze.
How long have you been hanging out on the Gold Coast now?
We’ve been here for about seven and a half weeks now. Because I travel with the circus, right now I call the Italo-Australian Club home. Wherever the circus is, is where I call home. I was born travelling with the circus. We own a property outside of Toowoomba; I’ve spent time there but never really lived there. I don’t like staying in one spot for too long.
What do you love most about it?
I love the sunshine, the weather is great. I have a lot of friends and family here, I’ve been coming to the Gold Coast for 10 or more years so I can see people I haven’t seen for a long time.
Tell us how you came to be a circus performer?
My family has been in the circus for close to 170 years, I’m seventh generation. My father was in the circus, his father, my great grandfather and great great grandfather and even my great, great, great grandfather. It’s definitely been a family tradition. Obviously the kids have no choice but to join because that’s what the parents do but I’ve got family members that were in the circus and aren’t anymore, one went to Oxford and became a professor and another went to Bond University here and is now working in Tasmania. I’ll definitely be in entertainment for the rest of my life, I’m a lighting designer and I do production stuff aswell so I’m not only a performer.
What memories stand out throughout your career?
There’s too many. The biggest memory I have is going into the ring at seven or eight years old – we did one act where there were 20 to 30 people on the stage at one time, which was pretty much all of my family. I’ve got so many different memories of being in this one act with my family performing in front of hundreds of people. I started doing that act when I was three years old.
For those who haven’t seen it, what can people expect from Infamous?
They can expect it to be something they haven’t seen in any traditional circus or cabaret show. It’s the best of both worlds, we’ve got the flying trapeze, wheel of death, comedy and dancers.
Why do you think it’s been popular enough to add a second season?
I think because it’s different to all the other shows. Because we’re a family, we have a very strong vibe we give off during the show; it’s a completely different feeling. The performance we put in and the talent we’ve got in this show, I think that’s what draws people back.
What’s your role in the show?
I’m a comedy character so I walk around pretending to sweep up; I get a little bit drunk and pretty much just muck around the whole show. I’m supposed to be doing a lot of other different things but I just make up my own stuff as I go along, push my way into the show and hopefully become the highlight. At the end I go on the trapeze and do a double somersault and catch it, to everyone’s surprise. Everything I do up there as the comedy part has come from my father, he used to do flying trapeze as a clown aswell.
What’s the secret to performing night after night in such a physically demanding role?
Lots of sleep. You’ve got to do a lot of exercise and have a lot of energy but you’ve also got to have a lot of rest time. It’s very physically demanding even though we only do four shows a week but because we do less shows, we have more rest time so it builds up and you get tired quicker.
What’s it like to live a life on the road?
We’re lucky because we’re with our family all the time but it can be a pretty demanding life. There’s a lot of work, we’re still setting up now, we do about a week of setup for the show and don’t get time off for that. Everyone has to get in and do everything, there’s constant pressure to get stuff going. Once we’re set up though, we’re in a town for six to seven weeks and it’s pretty cruisey, we only do four shows a week. I guess it has its good times and its hard times.
What’s the plan for the rest of the year for you?
We’re not sure yet, we’re planning on Brisbane but have to wait. We generally don’t book new towns until about a month before. We’re just here for now and we’ll see.
Best piece of life advice you’ve ever received?
Don’t think that anything is enough. If you want to do something, do it, don’t dwell on it. Just go do it.
Book your tickets to Infamous the Show QUICKLY right here.
Now Gold Coasters, don’t go thinking the completion of the holidays is an excuse to pull up social stumps. There are many good times to be had and oh look, here’s one we (slash the insanely talented performers) prepared earlier.
INFAMOUS made its debut on the Gold Coast in 2019 and it had quite the impact on us. So much so, that the incredible show has just rolled up again with performances starting on January 31st and going until March 8th.
So what’s all the fuss about? Well, INFAMOUS has been described as a cocktail of circus cabaret with a raunchy twist and that is exactly the kind of spice the Gold Coast needs.
Once again we get to experience the magic that is the Spiegel Big Top, this time at Westfield Helensvale and with even more half dressed, beautiful people than a regular Gold Coast day.
The premise is this: naughty characters, bare-chested (extremely muscly) acrobats, world-class dancers and crude comedians are all part of the lineup of extraordinary acts that will come together to bring you a unique, sexy, adult circus experience.
What a time to be alive.
So it’s a little bit burlesque, a large bit hilarious and unlike anything we’ve ever seen before, which is intriguing because my have we seen some things in this city of late.
As you’d expect from a circus-style production, there’ll be death defying trapeze acts with some uncensored dance moves thrown in for good measure. We cannot wait to lay our eyes on another round of INFAMOUS and we suggest you get involved too.
Choose from ringside chairs, Premium A Reserve seating and even ringside tables which includes table service, a bottle of bubbly, popcorn and a dessert platter.
Tickets on sale right now so get clicking gang, you won’t want to miss this one.
LOCATION: Westfield Shopping Centre, Helensvale
DATES: From Friday 31st January to Sunday 8th March
Words by Kirra Smith
Strap on your dancing shoes Gold Coasters because we’ve got news. The Pink Flamingo, the Gold Coast’s spangly new cabaret theatre and entertainment hub, is well on its’ way to bringing us the sophisticated, sexy stage shows we need and deserve.
As we’ve discussed previously, The Pink Flamingo, is set to open in Broadbeach where much-loved nightclub EAST once lived.
Brought to us by hospitality and showbiz royalty, Tony Rigas and Sue Porrett, the new venue will awaken a new era of world-class entertainment, right here on our sparkly shores.
The Pink Flamingo will deliver a sizzling array of international superstars, hand picked from around the globe, performing in a never-before-seen mix of cabaret, burlesque and circus-style shows.
The space itself will be all pretty-in-pink, 1920s Art Deco style with a modern twist featuring pink velvet furnishings (love it already), geometric light fittings and splashed of metallic gold. We’ve always wanted to step back in time to the days of Studio 54 and it seems this might be our chance friends.
You’ll be invited to quench that insatiable thirst at the signature Pink AIX Rose Bar and the MUMM Bubbles & Feathers Bar before heading to your assigned velvet seating, complete with soft LED mood lighting or perhaps you’d prefer a lavish pink booth in an intimate boutique setting.
Maybe go a few times so you can experience both.
The two-storey 797 m2 venue will seat over 250 guests with theatre shows to be performed on a state-of-the-art 4 metre diameter stage creating an up close and personal experience for us lucky folks.
The Birdcage on Level Two boasts the best seats in the house to experience the shows while also catering for corporate soirees and stylish private functions.
In even more exciting news, once the show is done for the evening The Pink Flamingo will transform into a nightclub the likes of which The Great Gatsby himself would likely attend and everyone is welcome.
So there you have it. An eclectic playground of sparkle, sass and sophistication is set to descend upon the Gold Coast and we suggest you update your feather boa collection quick smart.
Get excited, The Pink Flamingo is due in mid-2019.
P.s did you know a group of flamingoes is called a flamboyance. Fitting right?
LOCATION: Victoria Ave and Surf Pde, Broadbeach
There is absolutely no doubt that good things come out of hard times and it’s absolutely incredible to see Gold Coast businesses rallying around one another, and the public in general at a time when we most need each other.
The latest business to come out in support of those who have lost a significant amount of potential income is Home of the Arts (HOTA), our premier art and cultural precinct who have obviously also been adversely affected by the state of the world.
Despite that though, the team at HOTA have announced a new artists support fund that will see them offering up to $1,000 cash for projects that take no more than one week to develop and deliver.
Criena Gehrke (CEO at HOTA) said that artists are the lifeblood of HOTA and without them, there is no Home of the Arts and they need to know they are supported now more than ever. True.
It’s called the Rage Against the V(irus) Fund and it’s designed to turn downtime into a spark for innovation, using digital technology.
For Gold Coast based artists, it’s the perfect opportunity to follow through on an idea they’ve had swirling around for awhile, develop something a bit left of centre or experiment with something completely new. Creativity with no bounds, what a brilliant idea.
If you’re thinking of applying, the projects must have an online outcome, which could include a podcast, audio file, Facebook live event, video content, streaming, Instagram or other digital platforms.
The opportunity is open to artists, collectives and organisations, or artists who have a strong connection to the Gold Coast, with successful applicants to be notified within seven days of applying.
What are you waiting for friends, get out there and make something while you have some time up your sleeves.
Expressions of interest for the HOTA Artist Fund – Rage Against The V(irus) are open from Friday 20 March to Friday 15 May, with all projects to be completed by Friday 29 May, 2020.
Good one HOTA.
Words by Kirra Smith